Register Now for the 2017 Grey to Green Conference: Quantifying Green Infrastructure, May 8-10 in Toronto

February 15, 2017 at 4:20 pm

Register now for Green Roofs for Healthy Cities’ 2017 Grey to Green Conference: Quantifying Green Infrastructure, held on May 8-10 in Toronto!

As Media Partners once again, we want to make sure you take advantage of the Early Bird Registration discounts, ending on March 10, 2017.

Register Now 2017 Grey to Green Conference: Quantifying Green Infrastructure

Why Attend?

“Join us and shape a healthier and more resilient future at the Grey to Green Conference: Quantifying Green Infrastructure from May 8-10, 2017 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Now in its 5th year, Grey to Green will feature a public forum on May 8th to discuss barriers and opportunities to advance green infrastructure from a variety of professional perspectives. Tuesday, May 9th technical sessions include world renowned designer, Herbert Dreiseitl from Ramboll Liveable Cities Lab who will discuss shaping livable cities with green and blue infrastructure, plus over 50 more expert speakers! On May 10th, take your career even further with one of our many hands-on workshops and tours!” ~ Green Roofs for Healthy Cities

Held at the Chestnut Convention Centre in Toronto, Grey to Green has a great line-up of speakers, including:

Register Now 2017 Grey to Green Conference: Quantifying Green Infrastructure

L to R: Herbert Dreiseitl; Jennifer Keesmaat; Tony DiGiovanni, Executive Director, Landscape Ontario; and Steven Peck.

Now in its 5th year, Grey to Green will also feature a Public Forum on May 8th to discuss barriers and opportunities to advance green infrastructure from a variety of professional perspectives.  The Forum includes Jennifer Keesmaat, Chief Planner, City of Toronto; Deborah Martin-Downs, CAO, Credit Valley Conservation; Steven Peck, Founder and President, Green Roofs for Healthy Cities; and Scott Torrance, Practice Leader, Scott Torrance Landscape Architect.

Register Now to Save $100

This looks like a great conference with some wonderful people!  Learn more and to register, visit greytogreenconference.org.

Love the Earth, Plant a Roof (or Wall)!

By Linda S. Velazquez, ASLA, LEED AP, GRP
Greenroofs.com Publisher

Happy New (Challenging) Year 2017 and Let’s Get Involved

January 28, 2017 at 7:03 pm

Happy New Year to all and continued prosperity!

With the new leadership in the U.S., 2017 promises to be a challenging one for those of us in the pro-environment industry, here and abroad.  With the elections past and a new president in office, many of us feel disillusioned, angry, and even scared with the looming specter of the new administration’s upcoming four years.  But even if you say and believe “He’s not My president,” like it or not he actually is for now – but there is always something we can do as citizens to not feel so disenfranchised.  We can be part of the solution (or at least the opposition)!

Happy New Challenging Year 2017 Let's Get Involved Climate Change

Joseph Velazquez in Atlanta for the The March for Social Justice and Women. Photo by Hilary Bradford, Atlanta, 2017.

Even if you were not particularly politically active in the past, as I have been, for me this is the time for our collective similar-minded community to speak up and contribute our thoughts and actions.  We can voice our opinions and fight for a just, open, healthy, pro-environment and all-embracing peaceful community – on a small scale for all of our people and places, and on a grand scale for the future health of our planet.  Even if you voted for Trump for a host of other reasons, it must be clear that his policies on the environment and energy are dire, at best and to say the least.

Earlier this month two of our family members participated in The March for Social Justice and Women, which had an attendance of about 60,000 here in Atlanta and 3,000,000 globally.  On February 16 Aramis and I are planning to attend the Climate & Health Meeting: How the Climate Crisis Affects Public Health from The Climate Reality Project in partnership with the American Public Health Association, Harvard Global Health Institute, the University of Washington Center for Health and the Global Environment, and Dr. Howard Frumkin, former director of the CDC’s National Center for Environmental Health at the Carter Center.  Originally scheduled as a 3-day conference, it was unexpectedly cancelled earlier this month:

The Climate & Health Meeting is being held following the abrupt cancellation of a major climate change-public health conference planned by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). APHA Executive Director Georges Benjamin told The Washington Post that the CDC’s event was called off preemptively in an attempt to avoid any entanglements with the then-incoming Trump Administration, which has nominated several climate deniers to key cabinet positions relating to the environment and already has ordered science-based government agencies to cease the release of important public information and put a freeze on Environmental Protection Agency grants and contracts that could, according to the Post, “affect everything from state-led climate research to localized efforts to improve air and water quality to environmental justice projects aimed at helping poor communities.” ~ The Climate Reality Project

And we are keeping our eyes open for more information on the 2017 People’s Climate March on Washington just announced two days ago for April 29:

Happy New Challenging Year 2017 Let's Get Involved Climate Change

A steering committee of more than two dozen organizations is organizing the event. It is supported by the major national environmental groups and an array of social justice, religious, and labor groups, ranging from the Hip Hop Caucus to the Franciscan Action Network to the BlueGreen Alliance. More than 100 groups have endorsed the march. ~ InsideClimateNews

Climate reality is just that – science-based and real, here to stay.  Preaching to the choir here, we all know how climate change affects so many aspects of our lives, and we believe that designing with nature by incorporating plants on, over, and within our built environment can ameliorate at least our own neighborhoods and urban heat islands.  Greening buildings and creating green infrastructure is what we all do in some form or another – it’s our industry, so let’s get involved!

In the past many have devoted their time and effort to promoting Earth Hour, March 25; Earth Month, April; or specifically Earth Day, April 22.  But these events are meant to serve as reminders that our planet should be revered and protected every day of the year, not just sometimes.

So what can we do?  Beyond writing and calling your state senators and representatives, why not join or see what The Climate Reality Project, Earth HourEarth MonthEarth Day and these other organizations are doing, too: 350.orgNRDCAvaaz, League of Conservation Voters, Sierra Club, EARTHJUSTICEGreen AmericaGreenpeace, Scientists’ March on Washington, ACORE, WWF, Environmental Defense Fund, The Nature Conservancy, and of course Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, our own North American industry association, among so many others!

Of course, we would love to have you join/follow us our social media networks, too, to voice your opinion within our specific industry: Greenroofs.com Network on LinkedIn; Facebook; Twitter; GreenroofsTV Channel on YouTubePinterest; and our eNewsletters.

Earlier this month on January 18 both NASA and NOAA announced that 2016 was the hottest year ever recorded (since 1880), to the indifference of climate-deniers.  Previously, 2015 held the title of Warmest Global Year on Record.

Happy New Challenging Year 2017 Let's Get Involved Climate Change

In the past I have always believed in supporting our U.S. presidents – at least having respect for the Office of the President, but for me currently there is very little to respect in the persona of Donald Trump.  But with enough voices and actions, perhaps we can create some change and at least make his tenure palatable.

And to this effect, we hope you join us for our 4th biennial 2017 Greenroofs & Walls of the World™ Virtual Summit starting on April 9 through April 30. With a distinguished Advisory Group for 2017 and easier and more socially interactive online platforms, come network with us along with a host of fellow influencers from around the world, and bring your voice to the global table.

Happy New Challenging Year 2017 Let's Get Involved Climate Change

Here’s to peace, love, happiness, thriving business, and action for all in 2017!

By Linda S. Velazquez, ASLA, LEED AP, GRP
Greenroofs.com Publisher

Inaugural Green Wall Industry Survey Report from Green Roofs for Healthy Cities by Kara Orr

October 13, 2016 at 3:21 pm

Over 600,000 square feet of green walls were installed across North America in 2015.

Green Roofs for Healthy Cities (GRHC) is pleased to announce the results of the first-ever annual Green Wall Industry Survey.  In 2015, more than 600,000 square feet of green walls were installed across North America.

The annual Green Wall Industry Survey collected a variety of data on North American green wall installations, including size, location, wall structure, type of green wall system, and whether or not the installation qualified for LEED credits.  The report is available, at no cost, at greenroofs.org.

“We are very pleased with the leadership in the green wall industry which has enabled us to compile this market research. As the sector continues to grow we look forward to even better data in the years to come,” said Steven W. Peck, Founder and President, Green Roofs for Healthy Cities. “We look forward to learning the latest in green wall research and technology at CitiesAlive: 14th Annual Green Roof and Wall Conference in Washington, DC from November 1-4, 2016.”

Inaugural Green Wall Industry Survey Report Green Roofs Healthy Cities

2014 CitiesAlive Awards of Excellence, Exterior Green Wall Award, The Shoppes at Kingsbury Square, Chicago, IL; greenfacade® System; Award Winner: Wolff Landscape Architecture.

Green wall installations are taking place in almost every US state, with some preference for the coastal states.  California is leading in green wall installations, with New York and Florida following in second and third place respectively.  A major selling point of green wall installations is their eligibility for USGBC LEED credits for a project.  Additionally, financial, social and environmental benefits such as improved property value, health and well-being, and reduced energy use can be attributed to green wall installations.

Inaugural Green Wall Industry Survey Report Green Roofs Healthy Cities

2014 CitiesAlive Awards of Excellence, Exterior Green Wall Award, The Shoppes at Kingsbury Square, Chicago, IL; greenfacade® System; Award Winner: Wolff Landscape Architecture.

The green wall industry represents a growing and developing market sector which requires policy support and conclusive data to support growth and development.  This inaugural report will serve as a baseline measure for subsequent reports.

Inaugural Green Wall Industry Survey Report Green Roofs Healthy Cities

“We are so proud to have laid the groundwork to be able to provide our members with valuable information about the growth and trends of the green wall industry in North America” said Melissa Daniels, CNLP, Vice President & Horticultural Specialist, Plant Connection, Inc. and co-chair of the GRHC Green Wall Technical Committee.

Inaugural Green Wall Industry Survey Report Green Roofs Healthy Cities

Programming Available Only at CitiesAlive

Green Walls & Water Management: Stormwater Management & Potable Water Use Best Practices
November 2 – 10:30 am – 12:00 pm:

Water scarcity in many parts of the country, and proposed changes to LEED credits, are among the factors that threaten the long-term success of green walls. Experts in the industry weigh in how to overcome these barriers by designing and maintaining for maximum resilience, using green walls for stormwater management, using non-traditional sources of water, minimizing potable water use, ensuring that the benefits of green walls are clearly articulated, and more.

Chaired by Warren Gorowitz, Vice President of Sustainability, Ewing Irrigation and Landscape Supply, learn from green wall experts:
Dr. Alan Darlington, Founder & Owner, Nedlaw Living Walls
Hal Thorne, Chairman & CEO, GSky Plant Systems Inc.
Melissa Daniels, CNLP, VP & Horticultural Specialist, Plant Connection, Inc.

Green Stormwater Management Case Studies from Around the World
November 2 – 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm:

Designing for Biodiversity Green Roofs in Europe
Kamilla Aggerlund, Landscape Architect MDL, Assistant Professor, University of Copenhagen
Addressing a trend in Denmark, a strong wish among the public to add nature and biodiversity into cities, referred to as ‘city nature’. The role of green roofs and walls in this trend is presented along with the evolution of products for this market such as wild habitat plantings.

Using Green Wall Evapotranspiration to Manage Storm Discharge: An Example in San Juan, Puerto Rico
David L Aponte Dones, MSCE, GRP, Environmental Engineer, Office of Landscape Architecture
This presentation explores The Banco Popular Foundation building in San Juan Puerto Rico, where two green walls with a combined area of 3,200 sq. ft. manage more than 5,000 gallons of harvested water daily.

2016 Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design
Linda Velazquez, ASLA, LEED AP, GRP, Publisher & Design Consultant, Greenroofs.com
Haven Kiers, ASLA, LEED AP, GRP, Design Editor, Greenroofs.com
Enjoy a special 10th Anniversary Edition of Greenroofs.com’s popular Top 10 List of Hot Trends in Greenroof & Greenwall Design series with the theme of What’s old (or classic) is new again!

Inaugural Green Wall Industry Survey Report Green Roofs Healthy Cities

Designing Stormwater Runoff Minimizing Green Walls
November 3 – 10:45 am – 12:45 pm:

Water, Indoor Plant Walls and Building Performance
Dr. Alan Darlington, Founder & Owner, Nedlaw Living Walls
Dr. Darlington will discuss, with good design, living walls can replace key air handling components, and can use non-traditional water sources like stormwater or HVAC condensate to further sustainability goals.

Living Alternatives to Concrete Retaining Walls
Mark Woolbright, Filtrexx Living Wall Division Manager, Filtrexx International
This session will teach us how living walls can provide structural reinforcement, aesthetic diversity, temperature moderation, green space, and habitat.

Green Walls and Hanging Gardens
Matthew T. Berrelli, P.E., Eastern US Sales Engineering Manager, Ronstan Tensile Architecture
Using case studies of actual projects, this presentation will identify common barriers to green façade projects, like cost, maintenance, and various misconceptions and objections by clients, builders, and the designers themselves.

LED Lighting for Green Walls
Nathan Weipert, Sales Engineer, Sunlite Science & Technology
LED fixtures are the latest trend and Nathan will discuss how white light is produced from LED fixtures and how the spectrum emitted can affect the plant’s growth.

Training: Green Walls 101: System Overview and Design
November 1st – 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Price: $175 members / $199 non-members:

This course discusses design and construction best practices for green facades and living walls, including maintenance and irrigation requirements. Discover the latest research findings on the environmental benefits of these technologies. Registration includes a 95-page course manual.

Earn 3.5 Continuing Education/Professional Development Hours from LA CES, AIA CES, USGBC/GBCI, APLD, and NALP/CNLA.

Instructor: Melissa Daniels, CNLP, VP & Horticultural Specialist, Plant Connection, Inc.

Inaugural Green Wall Industry Survey Report Green Roofs Healthy Cities

Register for CitiesAlive here.

Kara Orr, Green Roofs for Healthy Cities

Inaugural Green Wall Industry Survey Report Green Roofs Healthy Cities

Kara Orr is the marketing coordinator at Green Roofs for Healthy Cities (GRHC), a membership-based industry association developing the green (vegetative) roof and wall industry in North America. Contact her to discuss sponsorship, trade show and programming opportunities.

GRHC’s mission is to increase the awareness of the economic, social and environmental benefits of green roofs and green walls, and other forms of living architecture through education, advocacy, professional development and celebrations of excellence. Visit www.greenroofs.org for more information.

Contact Kara at: 416-971-4494 x226.

5 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Attend CitiesAlive in Washington, DC, this November by Kara Orr

September 9, 2016 at 10:44 am

5 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Attend CitiesAlive Kara Orr

Register Today for CitiesAlive – Early Bird Rates End September 15th

All Photos Courtesy of Green Roofs for Healthy Cities

There are countless reasons to join colleagues at CitiesAlive 2016, the 14th Annual Green Roof and Wall Conference in Washington, DC.  Stormwater management continues to be a challenge for North American cities and this year, we’re Rising to the Stormwater Challenge in the city leading the charge on policy development and implementation.

Here are 5 compelling reasons why you should be a part of this progressive conference:

5 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Attend CitiesAlive Kara Orr

1: INSPIRING PROGRAMMING If you want to learn about the latest advancements in green roof, green wall and stormwater management in 2016, the programming at CitiesAlive will not fail to inspire. Under the timely theme of Rising to the Stormwater Challenge, delegates from across North America will hear from leading experts in green roof and wall research and policy; and be exposed to industry-leading designs that are not only aesthetically pleasing, but perform essential stormwater management roles as jurisdictions across the country grapple with ever-more-extreme weather events and aging green infrastructure systems.

CitiesAlive speakers include:

• Keynote: George Hawkins, Esq, CEO & GM, DC Water
• Keynote: Sabine O’Hara, Dean & Director, Landgrant Programs, University of the District of Columbia
• Keynote: Tommy Wells, Director, Department of Energy & Environment
• Keynote: Gail Vittori, Co-Director, Center for Maximum Potential Building Systems
Barbara Deutsch, FASLA, Executive Director, Landscape Architecture Foundation
Jason Long, Partner, OMA
Hallie Boyce, RLA, ASLA, Partner, OLIN
Kevin Kampschroer, Chief Sustainability Officer, U.S. General Services Administration
Charlie Miller, P.E., Founder & President, Roofmeadow
Dr. Bill Retzlaff, Associate Dean/Professor, SIUe
Dr. Brad Rowe, Professor, Michigan State University
Randy Sharp, GRP, FCSLA, ASLA, LEED AP

And over 100 more speakers!

5 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Attend CitiesAlive Kara Orr

2: CONNECT Professional relationships are made, strengthened and reinforced every year at CitiesAlive. From the local host committee reception taking place at the magnificent Capitol View at 400, to the trade show, to the Awards of Excellence celebration, this year’s networking events at CitiesAlive are sure to introduce you to new colleagues and bring you closer to friends.

5 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Attend CitiesAlive Kara Orr

3: EXCLUSIVE ACCESS There’s nothing like seeing projects up-close and personal, and CitiesAlive green infrastructure tours will do just that. With knowledgeable guides leading the way, come and visit the most interesting projects that Washington, DC has to offer such as Sidwell Friends Middle School, American University, Canal Park and the US Tax Court Plaza. It’s a fun and educational way to discover DC’s exceptional projects and get closer to your colleagues.

4: PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT Enhance your knowledge in specialized subject areas and earn continuing education credits by attending CitiesAlive training courses on November 1st and 4th. Choose from five courses including Green Roof Design & Installation, Introduction to Rooftop Urban Agriculture, and new this year, Making it Work: How to Properly Construct Low Impact Development (LID) Green Infrastructure.

CitiesAlive is pending approval for up to 11 continuing education / professional development credits for LA CES, AIA CES, BOMI, NLAP, APLD, and RCI.

5 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Attend CitiesAlive Kara Orr

5: LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION Washington, DC is not only at the forefront of green infrastructure policy and implementation, you’ll also discover an eclectic mix of restaurants, local shops and American history. CitiesAlive is conveniently taking place at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC). From there you’ll have access to Capitol View at 400, the Omni Shoreham Hotel (the conference hotel with reduced room rates), and all that DC has to offer on DC Metro’s Red Line.

Register soon as early bird rates end September 15th.

Visit CitiesAlive.org to plan your CitiesAlive experience.

5 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Attend CitiesAlive Kara Orr

Kara Orr, Green Roofs for Healthy Cities

5 Compelling Reasons Why You Should Attend CitiesAlive Kara Orr

Kara Orr is the marketing coordinator at Green Roofs for Healthy Cities (GRHC), a membership-based industry association developing the green (vegetative) roof and wall industry in North America. Contact her to discuss sponsorship, trade show and programming opportunities.

GRHC’s mission is to increase the awareness of the economic, social and environmental benefits of green roofs and green walls, and other forms of living architecture through education, advocacy, professional development and celebrations of excellence. Visit www.greenroofs.org for more information.

Contact Kara at: 416-971-4494 x226.